Supporters of former President General (R) Pervez Musharraf held a protest in front of High Commission and demanded the government to end the campaign aimed at maligning the former army dictator and asked for security, as his right under the constitution. Musharraf is kept under his residence, declared a sub jail.
Leaders of APML, present at the protest asked the government to take a notice of specific media persons and some lawyers targeting Musharraf and their character assassination approach. Participants at the three hour long protest also announced the formation of Musharraf support group. They kept on demanding for returning the cases against the former dictator and for his immediate release. General ® Pervez Musharraf came to Pakistan, after living in self-exile in London and Dubai for 5 years, is facing serious cases in Pakistan.
The protest was led by Asif Shahzad, Saeed Bhatti, Hamid Mirza, Syed Mujtaba Naqvi, Akram Gill and others. Musharraf’s supporters said that there was bias against him in media, the government and he was being deliberately humiliated before the world.
Asif Shahzad, Chairman of the campaign, said that denying Musharraf his right to stand in upcoming elections was an “illegal and unfair act” which needs wider condemnation. He said that Musharraf has not been found “guilty” of any charges by any court of law in Pakistan and elsewhere in the world, but it has been made out by his enemies as if he is the biggest criminal in this world.
Campaign coordinator Saeed Bhatti said that it was ironical that members of terrorist outfits have been allowed to stand in election without any scrutiny applied on them, but the man who fought for Pakistan at the global level has been denied his basic human rights. There is no allegation of corruption against him. His nomination papers have been rejected from all constituencies based on fabricated charges. He is at risk from lawyers who are gone rogue and are continuously taking law into their own hands,” he said, adding that politics was behind Musharraf’s victimisation and anti-democratic forces were against Musharraf’s participation in politics.
He said that Musharraf’s life was in danger and terrorists were openly threatening him, and his security was being compromised by forcing him to appear in courts for minor issues even though his appearances are not necessary.
A petition presented to the Pakistan High Commission said that Musharraf was living a comfortable life abroad and “knowing he had many enemies in Pakistan and knowing he would have to face multiple politically motivated cases in the courts, Mr Musharraf decided to return to Pakistan and fight in the court all of the charges levelled against him, hoping he would get justice”.
The petition called on Pakistani government to “remain fair and neutral” and ensure that Pervez Musharraf’s rights are protected under the Constitution of Pakistan.